March 1999 Meeting on Compulsory Licensing of Essential Medical Technologies

Implementation of Article 31 of the TRIPS agreement.

More will be added to this page later.

Press Release about March 26, 1999 meeting.

Sample letter of Invitation

Schedule for March 26, 1999 Meeting at the Palais des Nations

NGO Activities for March 25, 1999

NGO Activities for March 27, 1999

MSF Report on Meeting.

CPT background information on compulsory licensing

On March 25-7, 1999 there will be meetings in Geneva, Switzerland to discuss an initiative that seeks to improve access to AIDS and other essential medicines. In particular, the issue of compulsory licensing of patents on essential medical technologies.

The meetings seek to address aspects of the growing ethical and public health dilemmas associated with disparate access to modern medical discoveries and the health consequence of national policies on the protection of intellectual property. This is part of a public dialogue over the appropriate use of national laws permitting compulsory licensing of patents for essential medical technologies, examining public health, legal, ethical and practical issues.

The Meetings will include a Thursday March 25 tutorial for NGOs on compulsory licensing, a larger Friday March 26 meeting between NGOS, international organizations, national governments, industry and other stakeholders, and NGO meetings on Saturday March 27.

The meetings are hosted by:

Médecins Sans Frontières
the Consumer Project on Technology,
and Health Action International.

News Stories

April 11, 1999, Lisa Richwine, Reuters, Groups Say U.S. Hurts World Access To AIDS Drugs

April 3, 1999, Lancet, Compulsory drug licensing for countries hit by HIV is mooted

April 1, 1999, Deborah Mitchell, Reuters Health, on the JAMA HIV/AIDS Information Center, Compulsory licensing of anti-HIV drugs stirs debate in Geneva

Monday, March 29, 1999, Francis Williams, Financial Times, "Campaign over drug licensing to be stepped up." (title differs in some national editions).

September 5, 1998, Anjira Assavanonda in the Bangkok Post, NGOs rally against patent law changes: Call on US to stop pressuring Thailand

For additional information, contact:
Marie Paule Pierotti
MSF International a Geneve
tel 41-22-849-8400
fax 41-22-849-8404